‘He’s been a breath of fresh air’: Rio Ferdinand raves about Arsenal starlet

Rio Ferdinand singles out Bukayo Saka for his display in Arsenal's 2-1 win over Bournemouth in the FA Cup

Rio Ferdinand
Ex-Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand (Photo: BT Sport)

Rio Ferdinand has admitted that he was very impressed with Bukayo Saka’s performance in Arsenal’s 2-1 win over Bournemouth in the FA Cup fourth round on Monday night.

The teenager scored Arsenal’s opening goal in the FA Cup clash as Mikel Arteta’s team produced a solid display to book their spot in the fifth round, where they will face Portsmouth.

Eddie Nketiah then doubled the visitors’ lead before the break as Arteta’s side impressed at the Vitality Stadium.

Saka was deployed at left-back for the north London side and he more than held his own against the Premier League outfit.

The young Englishman has been impressing whenever called upon this season and he has made a total of 22 appearances in all competitions for the north London side.

Speaking after the game, former Manchester United defender Ferdinand singled out Saka for special praise following his performance against Bournemouth.

Ferdinand said on BT Sport: “I think Saka needs a special mention. This kid has been a breath of fresh air coming in.

“How quick he is, he’s confident as well, he plays the ball forward when he gets it, runs forward, the positions he takes up.

“That’s what I’ve liked so much about since Arteta has been in – the positions these young players are taking up and playing in, you can see the coaching coming out in them immediately.

“And that’s a great trait for someone so young as a manager.”

Saka will be hoping to be involved when Arsenal return to Premier League action with a trip to Burnley on Sunday afternoon.

The Gunners will then have a weekend off, before they face Newcastle United in the Premier League at The Emirates on 16 February.

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